With Android 4.3 Jelly Bean now on the market, many have set their sights toward the next iteration of Android operating system. After early rumors were put to rest in a sort of bait-and-switch, Android fans and once again anticipating the release of “Android 5.0 Key Lime Pie.”
One Year of Jelly Bean
It has been a year since Android has seen a major system update. In June 2012, Google introduced Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, which took the place of the 2011 flagship OS Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. Android 4.1 first shipped on the original Nexus 7 tablet and brought such new and improved features as a more streamlined interface, expanded notifications, resizable widgets, new camera gestures, Google Now and offline voice dictation.
Since then, we have seen two minor Jelly Bean updates hit the market. Android 4.2 launched in November 2012 on the Nexus 4 smartphone and Nexus 10 tablet bringing such improvements as lock screen widgets, added features to Google Now, Photo Sphere and Multiple User Profiles. Android 4.3 recently released in July on the 2013 Nexus 7 tablet and introduced Bluetooth Low Energy, restricted user profiles for tablets and improved gaming and graphics among other features.
But Android fans are still anxious for something truly new and exciting from Google, especially since many expected to see Android 5.0 release earlier in 2013. Tid bits of information about the system update circulated as early as fall 2012, but hopes were quickly dashed in late April when rumors suddenly switched to proposing Android 4.3 as the next Google operating system just prior to the Google I/O Conference. The update was ultimately unveiled and released in July.
Android 5.0 Reemerges
Despite the “bait-and-switch,” Android 5.0 Key Lime Pie never really went away. The operating system was even present at Google I/O in the form of Easter eggs within presentations at the conference. During one seminar, a graphic slide featured an Android robot wearing a tophat and eating a slice of key lime pie. Later, a rudimentary fighting game featuring several characters described as a Cthulhu monster called Biteyboro, whose “powers” include Chrome, Jelly Bean and Key Lime Pie was presented. Google notably made no mention of an Android system number (5.0); however, many have considered that at least we know the conglomerate has the Key Lime Pie name in mind.
Since then, news about Android 5.0 Key Lime Pie and its release date, while sill scarce, have been building momentum. First, Korean publication Daum proposed in early July that we Google would introduce Android 5.0 and a new Nexus smartphone in October. Around this time, a number of benchmarks, supposedly testing various devices running Android 5.0 surfaced; however, they have all been dismissed as fake.
Next, Taylor Wimberly of Android and Me proposed in early August that Motorola will deliver a Nexus device in the fourth quarter, which occurs between October and December. Many have considered that Wimberly and Daum’s reports may coincide. Also around this time, Android 5.0 reportedly surfaced within Google’s Chromium bug tracker in the form of an Android build, KRS36B, which was being tested for the Nexus 7 tablet and the Nexus 4 smartphone. Many noted the use of the letter K for the build number, which has been connected to “Key Lime Pie” and Google’s tradition of naming its operating systems after sweets and desserts.
Android 5.0 Release Date
Thus far, most believe Android 5.0 Key Lime Pie will release in October if not, by the end of the year. We have become accustomed to seeing an Android OS release in the summer and fall. With the recent launch of Android 4.3 it appears Google continues to adhere to its tradition.
Android 5.0 Features
News about Android 5.0 Key Lime Pie feature remains scarce at the moment but that could be because Android 4.3 is still in the spotlight. Currently, one of the most credible rumors come from the Wall Street Journal, which proposed that Android 5.0 will do away with high-end specs requirements in order for devices to update, which would mean a wider range of device would be able to run the system. That is particularly good news considering one early rumor suggested that many devices running a dual-core processor would be incompatible with Android 5.0.
Other rumors have suggested that we may see Android 5.0 run on other gadgets, such as a rumored Nexus Q smartwatch and a game console as well as more practical electronics such as dishwashers, refrigerators, and washing machines.
Android 5.0 Name
Android has been on the number 4 since 2011 with the introduction of Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. Many remember how Google jumped right from Android 3.0 Honeycomb, the tablet specific operating system to Android 4.0, the first Google system compatible with both smartphone and tablets. Fans have been anxious for a while for a system update that would not only change the number sequence but also usher in a new era of Android operating system. Android 5.0 has been anticipated as early as 2012, prior to the release of Android 4.1.
The code name Key Lime Pie has been around since 2012 as well, having replaced suggestions of “Kandy Kane,” which surfaced not long after the the release of Android 4.1. Key Lime Pie has been commonly accepted, even by Google as was previously mentioned, though it is not yet official. The K build in the Chromium bug tracker is another clue of Google’s plans by way of names, and that it does plan to continue its alphabetical dessert tradition.
Android 5.0 Devices
With the 2013 Nexus 7 now on the market, we have seen some interesting proposals for what Google has in store by way of its upcoming devices. Many are expecting a new smartphone as the Nexus 4 approaches one year on the market; and have proposed that the device will be called the Nexus 5. In addition to Taylor Wimberly’s suggestion, other reports propose the Nexus 5 may be made by either LG or Motorola; however, most have their money on Motorola. In addition, reports suggest that Google will release a 2013 Nexus 10 tablet to be made by either Asus or Samsung. Whatever device is released, we can be sure it will run a new version of Android, which could very well be Android 5.0 Key Lime Pie.
Despite the lack of concrete evidence of Android 5.0 Key Lime Pie, many are certain it is on its way. Considering how Android 4.3 popped up suddenly in late April and was on the market just two months later in late July; we may not have to wait long before the rumor mill starts churning out some solid information about Android 5.0.
What do you think is in store for Android 5.0 Key Lime Pie? Let us know in the comments below.
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Fionna Agomuoh is a Technology Reporter for the International Business Times, a vegan foodie, and a lover of Electric Dance Music.